Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Guessing Game

I have a hand-me-down breadmaker. It works fine, but figuring out how much time is left can be entertaining. For example, what would you guess if you saw the following:
Without knowing which pixels are burned out, and which are live, that first digit could be a 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, or 0. (I suspected it was a 1 because it only takes three hours total, it had been going for a while by this point, and the bread was still unbaked.) The second digit could be anything besides a two, and the last digit could be a 6, 8, or 0.

I figured that if I recorded a few times, I could figure out which pixels were live, which were burned out, and thus have a better idea of what time was left.

A while later:
Hmmm... that could be 0:40... I'll know for sure if I wait until it changes. After another minute:
Yep, the previous one was 0:40, and this is now 0:39. This next one also looks like 0:38:
Checking back a bit later, I found another live pixel around 0:20 (or 0:26 or 0:28):

Mapping this out, I get:
where red are dead pixels, green are live ones, and black are unknown.

Wasn't that fun?


kelliamanda said...

You are too funny, and such a comp sci person.

noricum said...


Miller Mommy said...

that WAS fun indeed...sounds like the kind of thing I would have done, too, if I had a partly broken display like that :-)

noricum said...


Nancy-Jane said...

Made me laugh.

Prairie Chicken... said...

look at me I'm white and nerdy!

noricum said...

Hey! Are you making fun of me?!? :(